Ahead of the holiday season, Woodford Reserve has released its annual holiday bottle.
This year the bottle features festive artwork by UK-based architect Nick Hirst.
Hirst’s painting “Winter Slumber” depicts the contrast between the warm, wooden interior of the historic warehouse at Woodford Reserve, and the stone exterior of the building.
This snowy scene, recognizable to anyone who has visited Woodford Reserve during the past 24 years, celebrates the fact that whiskey ages year-around — regardless of weather.
“Nick Hirst effortlessly captures the distillery with an artful elegance and architect’s eye,” says Woodford Reserve Master Distiller Chris Morris.
The holiday bottles are on sale across the U.S. with a retail price of $49.99 per 1-L bottle.
“At Woodford Reserve, I was looking for an opportunity to compare the colder exteriors to the warm interiors of the older buildings, while continuing to ‘tell the story’ of how the whiskey was made,” explains Hirst. “There was also a strong connection between the color of the rich wooden interiors of some of the buildings and the color of the bottle itself. The stone walls of the barrel store, with the barrel run leading into the wooden interior, was an ideal composition.”
Specializing in historic buildings, Hirst has worked for 20 years in sites across the world, from North Africa to the Middle East and Russia. His work has previously exhibited at the Royal Academy and Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour in London.
The “Winter Slumber” painting is based on a few preliminary pencil sketches from his visit to the distillery in Versailles, Kentucky, later laid onto a watercolor paper, with the detail added with gouache and pen-work.
“As I worked on the painting, I kept a bottle of Woodford Reserve on the drawing board, as a reminder of the color palette,” Hirst says. “Inevitably, the bottle made its way into a drawing.”